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Pens' Laraque sits with back spasms

Georges Laraque did not play in Tuesday's game against the Buffalo Sabres because of back spasms that started after Saturday's game against the New York Rangers.

"I've never had them before, so hopefully it's just a couple of days," Laraque said. "It's frustrating because I obviously just got here, and (Tuesday) is such a big game, with the announcement that the team's staying here. The crowd's going to be pumped. But with my back, I can't do anything."

• Coach Michel Therrien was back in town but still not with the team yesterday morning following the death of his father in Montreal this past Thursday. He did coach the game last night, however, as of yesterday morning, assistant Andre Savard said they still had not decided on whether Marc-Andre Fleury or Jocelyn Thibault would get the start tonight against the New Jersey Devils.

• Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur has the second-lowest goals-against average in the NHL at 2.14 and the most wins at 41. He has played in 66 games this season, and this is his NHL-record sixth 40-win season in his 13-year career.

"His consistency is what impresses me the most," Thibault said of Brodeur. "Everybody can play a good game once in a while, but he does it game in and game out. Obviously, you can't play 72 great games, but he's not far from that. He's very consistent and he's durable."

• Right wing Ronald Petrovicky got back in the lineup with Laraque out. The Penguins scratched forwards Chris Thorburn and Nils Ekman and defenseman Joel Kwiatkowski.


Digits

157 - Number of goals the Devils have allowed this season, the fewest in the East.

213 - Number of goals the Penguins have allowed this season, seventh-fewest in the East.

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